Iowa doctors show hesitance about low-THC medical cannabis program

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Fewer than 600 patients have been approved to participate in Iowa’s low-THC medical marijuana program, largely because doctors there are uneasy about certifying patients to get access to the medicine.

And that’s not particularly good news for cannabis businesses in the state.

Under Iowa’s low-THC cannabis program, products cannot exceed 3% THC.

Only about 325 of the state’s 7,000 actively practicing physicians have certified patients for the program, The Des Moines Register reported.

That could be “a massive problem” for the industry, Lucas Nelson, general manager of MedPharm, a cannabis cultivation and processing facility, told the newspaper.

Supporters of Iowa’s low-THC MMJ program predicted tens of thousands of patients with qualifying conditions would be able to access the medicine.

According to the newspaper:

  • The Iowa Medical Society, a voluntary professional organization for physicians, has warned doctors they could face legal or insurance problems if they participate in the program.
  • Des Moines oncologist Richard Deming is the director of Mercy Medical Center’s cancer center. He says he’s uncomfortable with the program because the products haven’t been proven safe and effective. Deming says he’s also concerned that there aren’t scientifically established dosing levels.

– Associated Press and Marijuana Business Daily